The Denver Broncos on Thursday signed free-agent wide receiver Edell Shepherd, Head Coach Mike Shanahan announced. As per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Shepherd (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) is a fifth-year player who joins the Broncos after seeing time on the rosters of Detroit (2007), Houston (2006), Tampa Bay (2003-06) and Chicago (2002-03). Shepherd, who entered the NFL with Chicago in 2002 as a college free agent from San Jose State University, spent the 2007 regular season out of the NFL after Detroit released him on Aug. 28.
In 25 career regular-season games, Shepherd has totaled 13 receptions for 163 yards (12.5 avg.) with one touchdown and two rushes for five yards (2.5 avg.). He also has seen significant action on special teams, recording 37 career kickoff returns for 809 yards (21.9 avg.) and three punt returns for 24 yards (8.0 avg.).
The wide receiver saw his most recent regular-season NFL action with the Texans in 2006, playing seven games for the club and posting three receptions for 22 yards (7.3 avg.) along with 17 kickoff returns for 395 yards (23.2 avg.). Shepherd joined Houston on Sept. 3, 2006, when he was claimed off waivers from Tampa Bay.
During the 2005 season with the Buccaneers, he appeared in all 16 games and recorded single-season career highs in receptions (6) and receiving yards (103) while catching the first touchdown of his career against Washington on Nov. 13, 2005. Shepherd, who appeared in Tampa Bay's NFC Wild Card Game that season, also led the Buccaneers with a 20.7-yard kickoff return average (20-414) in 2005.
Shepherd spent most of his rookie season in 2002 on the Bears' practice squad and began the 2003 season on the Buccaneers' practice squad before he was signed to their active roster late in the year. He spent the entire 2004 campaign on injured reserve with Tampa Bay due to an injury suffered in training camp.
A second-team All-Western Athletic Conference selection as a senior at San Jose State, Shepherd set school single-season records for receptions (83) and receiving touchdowns (14) during his final collegiate season. He transferred to SJSU after playing two seasons at West Los Angeles College.
Born May 18, 1980, Shepherd attended Dorsey High School in Los Angeles.